Autism Alliance to Receive Community Service Award

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MetroWest Daily News
February 1, 2018

FRAMINGHAM — The Autism Alliance, a program that supports families and individuals affected by autism spectrum disorders, will be honored later this year for its efforts.

The Framingham High School Foundation announced this week that it will present its annual Jim O’Connor Community Service Award to the alliance.

The honor, given to organizations that work as a team to serve Framingham youth, recognizes “those who hold the passion, vision, commitment and leadership skills” of O’Connor, who founded Salute to Framingham, the foundation’s awards program.

Led by co-directors Allison Daigle and Pam McKillop, the alliance is one of seven autism support centers in the state, and the only one of its kind in Massachusetts, according to an announcement.

The group, run by Advocates, a Framingham-based organization, offers an array of supports and services designed to help families caring for a loved one with autism, according to the announcement. More than 200 families in Framingham benefit from its programs, learning not only to cope with autism, but to “flourish and grow,” the announcement reads.

The group, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary, was launched in 1993 as The Family Voice. It was started by six families with children with autism, and has since grown from a grassroots network into a full support center. Its services include support groups, recreational events and school vacation activities, as well as training to first responders, school nurses, business staff, teachers, hospital workers, students and clergy.

This year’s Salute to Framingham will take place at 5 p.m. on March 22 at the Sheraton Framingham ballroom. Tickets for the event will go on sale online Feb. 1.

Proceeds from the event benefit the foundation, which supports extracurricular activities, arts and athletics at Framingham High School.

For more information, visit salute-to-framingham.com or contact Sydney Turner at sydneysturner@aol.com or 508-872-1057.